Shutdown Specials: A Running List of Discounts

Rene Ramos/

If there is one silver lining in the shutdown, it may be that furloughed federal employees have unexpected free time on their hands. Unfortunately, they also are likely watching their pocketbooks, because back pay is far from a guarantee in this fiscal environment. Washington-area businesses are aware of this, and are stepping up to offer shutdown specials, on everything from lunch to exercise classes. 

We have started a running list of discounts and other discount directories specifically related to the shutdown. Please use the comments section to let us know about other specials you come across. 

  • Happy hour and dining specialsWashington Post directoryWashingtonian guideArlington Now report on dining deals; Washington City Paper reportSoupergirl vegan and vegetarian restaurant in Takoma Park will give furloughed feds 10 percent off on soups and salads during the shutdown (and has noted the offer is not available to members of Congress); Denny's is offering free food to federal employees and military members at Maryland, D.C. and Virginia locations; Bertucci's will give federal employees or military members with a government ID 15 percent off, though Oct. 25 at select locations (Annapolis and Columbia, Md.; Ashburn, Gainesville, Short Pump, Springfield, Alexandria and Herndon, Va.; as well as the Dupont Circle and Pennsylvania Avenue locations in D.C.)

  • General discounts: NBC Washington list of shutdown freebies, including pilates and knitting classes. 

  • Yoga classes: $5 off drop-ins at Circle Yoga in Chevy Chase, $10 yoga class drop-ins at Willow Street Yoga in Takoma Park and Silver Spring, Md.

  • Other fitness classes: TITLE Boxing Club in Manassas, Va., is offering free workouts

  • Financial assistance: Hyundai loan deferral program

  • Tourist attractions: Federal Workers’ Guide to Open D.C.; Virginia Zoo in Norfolk is offering free admission to federal employees with an ID, Monday - Friday during the shutdown.

  • Salon/spas: Salon Bisoux in Alexandria, Va., is offering 25 percent off to new clients through Sat., Oct. 5, with select stylists, colorists and aestheticians. Call (703) 797-0180 for appointments. Urban Halo salon in Arlington, Va., is offering a free conditioning treatment with any hair service, for furloughed feds with ID, through Oct. 12. 

For a more general list of federal employee and military discounts, not tied directly to the shutdown, see our Gimme My Discount page

(Image via Rene Ramos/

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